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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Progress report: Daily Wildcat wants your input on this semester’s paper

    The semester is winding down so I figure it’s as good a time as any to request a progress report. The Arizona Student Media Board will soon name a new editor-in-chief of the Arizona Daily Wildcat for the fall, and staff members are starting to consider stepping into editorial leadership roles.

    With new editors comes inexperience — it’s inevitable. Current editors will try their best to prepare their replacements, but there aren’t enough words to fully describe all that the job entails and the fact that you will probably feel every emotion possible while doing it.

    Most of our editors would tell you that managing a desk involves a lot of trial and error. But it’s also an opportunity to generate new ideas regarding story coverage, efficiency and management that they can pass on to future editors.

    So I have to ask — not just for myself but for you and for future editors — are we doing a good thing badly?

    I know I keep harping on it, but one of our biggest challenges was expanding our social media presence — trying to tweet updates or breaking news and posting stories on Facebook. Do we tweet too much or not enough? Do our tweets or Facebook posts make you want to read the story?

    We’ve been trying to keep our stories focused on the UA and its students and I wouldn’t be a good representative if I said we always do that.

    Maybe we lose your interest because you’re underage and when trying to find something to do on a Saturday night, we only provide you with 21 and over options. Or maybe you’re miffed because we don’t write enough about clubs.

    While it may be too late in the semester to completely rectify that situation, we can make it better during the summer and come back with ideas for “more of this” and “less of that.”

    But there is a second part to my “good thing badly” question: trust. We’re a student newspaper and this is a learning environment. And although we like to be as professional as possible, we’ve made mistakes.

    As assistant copy chief, I’ve had to add an “Editor’s Note” in some online stories because I, or another editor, has found an error. We post a note to our readers when we post corrections because we want to be transparent. If we don’t catch it until after it’s published in print, it gets a note in the paper the following day.

    Online stories, however, are more of a gray area. If it’s an online story, the mistake can just be fixed without anyone the wiser. But it could be argued that doing it that way creates less trust between the writer and the reader.

    Are the notes a help or a hindrance? When you see one, do you appreciate the openness and transparency or do you only see the mistake which makes you distrustful?

    So those are my two questions, readers: Are we paying enough attention around campus and do you trust us?

    We have the opportunity to make these changes but if no one speaks up, we will assume we’re doing a good thing well.

    —Lynley Price is the readers’ representative and assistant copy chief. She can be reached at letters@wildcat.arizona.edu or on Twitter via @lynleyprice.

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